Recipe courtesy of Christina Austin, Strawberries for Supper.
They are so easy to put together and because you don’t have to brown the meatballs before baking them in the oven it cuts down on the mess and time. They are an excellent weeknight meal for this reason.
450 g/ 1 lb extra lean ground beef
230 g/ 8 oz cremini mushrooms
1/3 cup basmati rice (uncooked)
¼ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp salt
1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
3 cups canned crushed tomatoes
½ cup low sodium beef broth
1 clove garlic
½ tsp Herbes de Provence or Italian seasoning
pinch of salt and pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
In a food processor with the blade attachment, add the mushrooms and pulse until they are smaller than a peppercorn.
In a medium bowl, mix the pureed mushrooms with the ground beef, rice, spices, salt, and Worcestershire Sauce with your hands or a metal spoon.
Set the meat and mushroom mixture aside and mince the onion and garlic in the food processor (no need to clean it out).
Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and sauté the minced onion and garlic over medium heat for 3-4 minutes.
Mix the sautéed onion and garlic with the crushed tomatoes, broth, dried herbs, and salt & pepper in a large glass measuring cup or a bowl. Stir well and then transfer half the liquid to a large casserole dish (such as a lasagna pan).
Scoop out and shape slightly heaped tablespoon-size meatballs and place them in the dish on top of the sauce. It is best to use a measuring spoon to scoop out the meatballs. Do not make them larger than this or the rice won’t cook properly.
Once all the meatballs are shaped and in the dish, pour the remaining sauce over top of them. Don’t worry if they are not completely covered in the sauce.
Use either the lid to the casserole dish or snugly fit a large piece of foil over the dish if it did not come with a lid.
Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes at 400 F. You can take the foil (or lid) off when there is about 10-15 minutes left if you want the sauce to thicken slightly.